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Iran

Iran Urges UN to Stop US Plan for Training, Arming Syrian Rebels

An Iranian deputy foreign minister said the Pentagon’s train-and-equip mission for the so-called moderate Syrian opposition will bolster terrorism, calling for the United Nations’ action to stop the plan.

The UN should take measures against such American plan that “weakens a political solution” to the Syrian crisis and “strengthens terrorism,” Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for African and Middle Eastern Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian said on Friday.
He made the comments in a meeting with Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad, who is in Tehran for talks on the latest developments in the crisis-torn Arab country.
On January 16, the Pentagon unveiled plans for deployment of 400 trainers and hundreds more troops in a train-and-equip mission for Syrian rebel forces.
The American troops will be deployed starting in early spring on six- to eight-week missions in three countries -Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia- as part of the Obama administration’s plan to expand training for the so-called moderate Syrian rebels.
During the meeting in Tehran, Mekdad referred to the crisis in his country as a “foreign plot”.
He said the US decision to train and arm the anti-Damascus rebels is a “clear violation” of a ceasefire proposal for Syria’s northern city of Aleppo proposed earlier by the United Nations peace envoy.
Since October, UN Syria mediator Staffan de Mistura has been working on a plan to broker “local freezes”, starting in Aleppo, to alleviate fighting that has killed more than 200,000 people in four years.

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